Maths Curriculum Intent

Enjoy achieving together … by being the best that we can be!

At Usworth Colliery, we …

Go places, do things, meet people and learn new things.



At Usworth Colliery:

  • We want to inspire our children to be great mathematicians who are engaged in their learning and passionate about their work.
  • Through careful planning that is linked to real life experience and cross-curricular content, we want to build resilient problem solvers who are challenged to try hard, reason using accurate vocabulary, think creatively and flexibly and are able to work collaboratively by communicating their ideas coherently. This could be through using practical resources, pictorial representations or formal written methods and explanations.
  • We want our children to be excited and confident about their work and proud to share it with their peers, staff and visitors



















Maths Documents


At UCPS, we follow the national curriculum for Mathematics in a blocked curriculum map to ensure that all pupils:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.


So that the majority of our children reach age related expectations as the end of each key stage, we use a mastery approach and lesson structure to teach Mathematics. We believe that to achieve coherence, learning needs to be broken down into small, accessible steps (to avoid cognitive overload) that allow children to make incremental progress by combining fluency in basic skills and methods with opportunities for rich and integrated reasoning and problem solving. It also offers our children the chance to use practical, concrete resources throughout lesson sequences, where appropriate, to support their understanding alongside using pictorial or abstract recordings where children are ready to do so.

All lessons have the following structure:

  1. Explore: children are given a problem, picture, stimulus or equipment to discuss. This gives teachers the opportunity to formatively assess pupils’ understanding and adapt the next stage of the lesson if necessary.
  2. Structure and Model: The teacher may model themselves or use rapid graspers to model new methods and strategies for certain skills or their thinking for reasoning and problem solving. This will be in a ping-pong style where the teacher allows opportunities for children to work practically, record or discuss before feeding back to the class. Again, formative assessment will be happening throughout this stage to set groupings for independent work and identify those who need further support or challenge.
  3. Intelligent Practise: Children will work independently or in groups to complete the same task wherever possible. Support and challenge will be highlighted on the IWB screen, so children know where to go next or for support. They may self-select this or be guided by the teacher.
  4. Review/Assess: Finally, there will be a chance to apply learning from the lesson to a new context or to share findings from the lesson and give the teacher a final chance to assess children. They will identify from this point who needs immediate intervention to be completed before the next lesson to help children with gaps to keep up with the lesson sequence.


Throughout each lesson, there will be opportunities to use CPA recording, to reason and solve problems. Variation is also used, either conceptually or procedurally, to ensure maximum progression and allow deep understanding:

Procedural variation – This is a deliberate change in the type of examples used and questions set, to draw attention to certain features.
Conceptual variation – When a concept is presented in different ways, to show what a concept is, in all of its different forms


To support children’s reasoning and problem-solving skills, teachers model their own thinking alongside the use of pictorial models to support breaking down the problem.

Each classroom has a vocabulary wall of key words used to far to support explanations. Key vocabulary and stem sentences are displayed on each screen of the lesson IWB.


We want our children to develop sufficient understanding and unconscious competence in their mathematical basic skills. Children are supported in embedding key concepts into long term memory to support them in recalling them fluently in a 15-minute maths meeting (Hi5) 4 times a week. This gives them time to practice counting, fact recall and calculation. The objectives of which are set out in the TfC CFC documentation and include some revision of previous year groups’ content. They are reviewed and adapted by teachers to suit the needs of their children

Our staff support children by getting to know them individually, assessing their strengths and weaknesses and we adapt our curriculum to meet the needs of our SEN children, our most able children and our children who have faced the highest levels of disadvantage while still providing them with appropriate ambition and challenge.

We use daily maths meetings (Hi5) to revise and reinforce basic skills to ensure children are able to rapidly recall the facts they need to support their reasoning and problem solving.

Where there are children who have gaps in their learning or who are not yet working at age related expectations, we use a combination of immediate and planned intervention to help them to keep up and catch up with their peers and in some instances, we use pre-teaching to support vocabulary development and calculation practise particularly in groups of disadvantaged children who we know have narrower technical vocabulary banks in our setting.

Opportunities are given for children to work collaboratively in mixed ability pairs or groups to support language development and the sharing of strategies. We know this helps our SEN children and girls especially. 


Mathematics in EYFS is developed through purposeful, play based experiences and will be represented throughout the indoor and outdoor provision. Learning is based on pupil’s interests and current themes and focuses on the expectations from Development Matters / Early Years Outcomes. Mathematical understanding is also developed through stories, songs, games, imaginative play, child-initiated learning and structured teaching. As pupils progress, they will be encouraged to record their mathematical thinking in a more formal way at the discretion of the EYFS staff when they identify that children are ready.

KS1 & KS2

It is expected that the vast majority of the children will progress through the programmes of study at broadly the same rate. In order to do so, there will be support and challenge built into each stage of the lesson. Examples of support could include using alternative recording strategies such as concrete equipment, working in a guided teacher group or with support from peers. Unless children are following an alternative curriculum through PIVATs or a lower year group objective, children will be given the same opportunities within the lesson. Examples of challenge could include answering, “What if…?’ questions, developing their own problems or solving puzzles and problems with multiple steps.

Mathematics is an interconnected subject in which pupils need to be able to move fluently between representations of mathematical ideas. Pupils should make rich connections across mathematical ideas to develop fluency, mathematical reasoning and competence in solving increasingly sophisticated problems. They should also apply their mathematical knowledge to science and other subjects. There is time given in Science to cover statistics objectives through analysing graphs and tables as well as constructing these.

Additional cross-curricular planning is outlined in each year group’s Topic and Science planning map at the start of each unit.

ICT is used in maths lessons to enhance the learning. iPads are an effective tool to practise basic skills and rapid recall as well as to support depth of understanding within mathematical concepts. We use the TT Rockstars app to support our children’s times tables knowledge. Calculators are not a substitute for good written and mental arithmetic and are introduced near the end of key stage 2 to support pupils’ conceptual understanding and exploration of more complex number problems, if written and mental arithmetic are secure.


All children from Years 1 to 6 have a TT Rockstars log in.   Teachers may set specific tables for children to practise or children can choose their own to work on.  We regularly participate in TT Rockstars competitions to improve our tables knowledge (and try to win some awesome prizes too!)